Kanban

10 Best Backlog Management Tools in 2024

Dovile Miseviciute ·

Passionate content marketer looking to bring better solutions to the project management space. 2020 - Present Marketing specialist at Teamhood. 2014 - 2020 Marketing manager for Eylean.

backlog management

Good backlog management is key to the success of your project or product. It allows for focused work, clear priorities, and fewer unknowns when it comes to teamwork. To succeed at this task, the product owner needs to have experience, implement good backlog management practices, and employ tools to help the process. Today, I am looking at the latter to see which backlog management tools will help you deliver the most value.

At the top, you will see an overview of all the backlog management tools discussed in the post. The comparison table allows you to overview the main features and attributes. Later, each tool is discussed in more detail. An important subcategory is agile backlog management tools for those who employ Scrum or Kanban practices.

Best Backlog Management Tools Comparison

TeamhoodPivotal TrackerMondayAirfocusJIRAAsanaHansoftClickUpYodizBacklog
Brandteamhoodpivotal trackermonday iconairfocusjiraasanahansoftclickup iconyodizbacklog
Capterra4.9⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐4.3⭐⭐⭐⭐4.6⭐⭐⭐⭐4.5⭐⭐⭐⭐4.4⭐⭐⭐⭐4.5⭐⭐⭐⭐4.2⭐⭐⭐⭐4.6⭐⭐⭐⭐N/A4.5⭐⭐⭐⭐
Free versionYesYesYesNoYesYesNoYesYesNo
PricingFrom $7 user/monthCustomFrom $9 user/monthFrom $69 editor/monthFrom $7 user/monthFrom $11 user/monthCustomFrom $7 user/monthFrom $3 user/monthFrom $35 per month
Kanban View
List View
Kanban Swimlanes
RICE, ICE, or custom formulas
Custom Prioritization
Item Dependencies
Item Tags
Collaboration Features
Integrations

Criteria for the Best Backlog Management Tools

To find the top backlog management tools available, I rely on a specific set of criteria. I invested hours into researching and evaluating each tool meticulously, comparing it against the strict criteria we’ve set for its category. These criteria are directly tied to the backlog management process and the essential features it demands. Here’s the feature list I utilized for this comparison:

  • Versatile views: To easily switch between Kanban and List views for diverse perspectives in meetings.
  • Customization: Customize views to reflect your process with adjustable statuses and swimlanes.
  • Formulas: Utilize RICE, ICE for prioritization.
  • Dependencies: Map out item relations to visualize dependencies and plan accordingly.
  • Item tags: Categorize items with tags for better organization.
  • Collaboration features: Enhance teamwork with collaboration features for seamless communication.
  • Integrations: Connect with other tools for improved workflow efficiency.

These are the key features discussed in the post and used to compare the following tools. While not all tools carry all of these features, all have the majority required for backlog management.

Best backlog management tools in 2024

1. Teamhood – best for visual backlog management

backlog list

Capterra score: 4.9/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Teamhood user reviews on G2

Teamhood is an agile backlog management tool that tracks the Agile process from start to finish. Complete with a flexible and fully customizable Kanban board, Gantt chart, Workload management, and live reports, this is a powerhouse for any Agile team.

Using this tool, you can visualize and prioritize the backlog items in multiple views – Kanban, List, and Gantt. Allowing you to choose how to portray the information in different circumstances, such as different backlog meetings. Teamhood also allows you to add predefined and custom information to ensure enough context for each item. As well as the option to create custom project prioritization techniques and calculate your RICE or other score.

Top backlog management features:

  • Interchangeable visualization options (Kanban, List, Gantt views)
  • Custom prioritization setup (priority columns, item categorization, custom item fields)
  • Formulas to calculate RICE, ICE, and other techniques
  • Item dependencies within one or several boards
  • Easy categorization via tags, Swimlanes, and custom fields
  • Various collaboration features

Price: Free plan available for 10 users. Professional plans start at $7 per user/month.

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2. Pivotal Tracker

Capterra score: 4.3/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Pivotal Tracker user reviews on G2

Pivotal Tracker is a product backlog management tool designed specifically for software development teams. As such, it offers a more developer-oriented interface and features that allow for software product planning. Other teams may find this tool a bit too complicated as the interface is not beginner-friendly.

Pivotal Tracker offers quite a few backlog management features as well as an open API, which makes it a good candidate for your backlog management tool. Here, you will be able to visualize your backlog in a Kanban board or review a list of items. Item tags and dependencies will make it easy to follow the continuity of the process, while the collaboration features will make it easy to use with the team.

Top backlog management features:

  • Environment optimized for software development
  • Various integration opportunities
  • Collaboration features

Price: Free for up to 5 users, business pricing is available upon submitting a quote.

3. Monday

Capterra score: 4.6/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Monday user reviews on G2

Monday is a work management solution that offers backlog management as part of its feature set. Here you can review the initiatives and prioritize them with the help of custom fields, such as effort, impact, and user votes. This makes it easier to prioritize items in your backlog and define priorities without relying on your personal biases.

While Monday is not a fully-featured project management platform, it will offer a visual way to prioritize and organize the backlog for smaller teams. And the column-based Kanban board will offer a way to visualize those items once the team start working on them.

Top backlog management features:

  • Custom fields allow adding important information for the proposed items
  • RICE metric can be used (without automated calculation)
  • Integrations with other solutions

Price: Free for up to 2 users, then $9 per user/month.

4. Airfocus

Capterra score: 4.5/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Airfocus user reviews on G2

Airfocus is a product backlog management software designed for product teams. Here, you can visualize tasks in Kanban and List views, as well as define dependencies and categorize them with tags. Thus allowing you to use these tools in the prioritization process.

This solution also offers a specialized priority chart that helps determine which tasks to take next. Besides that, you will be able to add customer insights into your workspace for more context.

In my opinion Airfocus offers a comprehensive platform for product backlog management. This can enable your team to prioritize work, build roadmaps, and align on product strategy effectively. While it provides a range of useful features and integrations, you may find the pricing and setup complexity to be potential drawbacks compared to simpler project management tools like Teamhood.

Top backlog management features:

  • Built-in priority chart for easier evaluation
  • Customer insights integration
  • Integrations with other PM solutions

Price: Starts at $69 per editor/month.

5. JIRA

Capterra score: 4.4/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐

JIRA user reviews on G2

JIRA is work-tracking software for large IT organizations. While it is used by companies in other fields, its features are optimized for IT projects and the needs of such teams.

Here, you will be able to switch between several views for backlog management and task execution. There is also a way to implement RICE scoring by using visual custom fields. However, JIRA lacks when it comes to Kanban visualization and categorization of items on a Kanban board.

Overall I think that Jira is a robust backlog management tool offering extensive customization options. But its complexity and high learning curve can be overwhelming for non-technical users. Also, while it provides a free plan, accessing the full range of features and capabilities often requires a paid subscription, which can be a financial challenge.

Top backlog management features:

  • Multiple views to use for backlog management
  • RICE scoring implementation
  • IT focused features
  • System calibrated for IT teams

Price: Free for up to 10 users, then $7 per user/month.

6. Asana

Capterra score: 4.5/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Asana user reviews on G2

Asana is a work management platform that allows you to easily manage tasks and prioritize initiatives. Designed for creative teams and projects, this tool can also be applied to backlog management needs.

Use the backlog management template to create a board that will hold all of your backlog items. There, you can prioritize and assign story points before moving the items into the next Sprint. For easier process tracking, take advantage of the built-in Kanban and list views, as well as the extensive collaboration features.

Based on my research, Asana offers a user-friendly interface, cool collaboration features, and efficient project management capabilities. However, its extensive features and potential limitations in functionalities like time tracking and data exporting may suggest exploring additional integrations for a better backlog management solution.

Top backlog management features:

  • Option to switch between Kanban and List views depending on the context
  • Item dependencies to ease planning
  • Item tags to categorize
  • Story points to evaluate workload
  • Collaboration features for the team

Price: Free for up to 15 users, then $11 per user/month.

7. HelixPlan (former Hansoft)

Capterra score: 4.2/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Hansoft user reviews on G2

Hansoft is an enterprise product backlog management tool for teams looking to improve their collaboration. This enterprise option allows teams to add a high level of detail and provides out-of-the-box reports and a tracking dashboard.

While not particularly friendly for day-to-day work, Hansoft allows one to easily add and review the information within the tool itself. Which may be preferred by the stakeholders.

Hansoft gives teams a pretty solid set of features for managing their product backlogs – things like effective release planning, good scrum and agile tools, and capabilities to help keep everything organized. However, some users have mentioned the interface can be a bit clunky and not the most user-friendly, and the pricing may be on the higher side compared to other options out there.

Top backlog management features:

  • Detailed List view
  • Visual reporting dashboard

Price: Free trial available, custom quotes for business pricing.

8. ClickUp

Capterra score: 4.6/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐

ClickUp user reviews on G2

ClickUp is a visual productivity platform that offers backlog management tools as part of its package. I’m impressed by ClickUp’s level of customization and flexibility. It seems users can really mold the platform to fit their unique workflows and preferences.

Here, you can visualize items in the list and Kanban views, as well as assign priorities and estimate complexity. CilckUp allows you to visualize RICE scoring through custom fields, but there is no automated calculation of the final RICE score. The user interface is intuitive, and the mobile apps make it easy to stay connected and manage tasks while on the move.

Time tracking capabilities seem to be lacking some advanced features, which could be a drawback for teams needing robust time management tools. Also, there have been reports of occasional bugs, data inconsistencies, and performance issues cropping up, which can be frustrating for users.

Top backlog management features:

  • Visualization of tasks in multiple views
  • Rice calculation through custom fields
  • Collaboration features for the team

Price: Free version available, business pricing starts at $7 per user/month.

9. Yodiz

Yodiz user reviews on G2

Yodiz is an Agile backlog management tool that aims to guide you through the process from planning to initiation. Here, you will be able to visualize and prioritize items in a list view. It provides additional details on items as well as the priority score from 1 to 10. Also I found that Yodiz has a flexible pricing model, ideal for teams of any size. However, its search functionality is lacking, which may impact productivity, especially if your team deals with extensive issue backlogs.

All in all, Yodiz is best suited for technical users who want backlog management software for the Scrum process.

Top backlog management features:

  • Detailed List view for backlog prioritization
  • Kanban view with predefined swimlanes
  • Built-in prioritization feature

Price: Free for up to 3 users, then $3 per user/month.

10. Backlog

Capterra score: 4.5/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Backlog user reviews on G2

Backlog is a collaboration tool for managing backlogs. Contrary to other tools on this list, It is not an Agile-focused tool. This means it offers limited Agile features and no advanced options.


I especially appreciate Backlog’s versatile project management capabilities but find its interface lacking dynamism. Despite these limitation, Backlog offers plenty of features for effective backlog management, such as task prioritization and dependencies.

Top backlog management features:

  • Item dependencies to visualize the relationships
  • Customizable prioritization
  • Collaboration features

Price: Starts at $35 per month.

Continue learning about backlog management

Do you want to know more about the main challenges the “backlog leader” faces and main pain points? What is the arrow kanban method, and what solutions does it provide?

backlog software

The Arrow Kanban board is detailed, featuring upstream and downstream processes, a commitment point, classes of service, an expedite lane, and metrics such as cycle time, lead time, and throughput.

Explore additional Kanban resources for deeper insights.

What is Kanban? Exploring Methodology and Benefits
Who Manages Portfolio in Kanban?
Kanban Pull System Guide: Definition & Examples
Kanban Boards vs Kanban Systems: 6 Key Differences
Kanban Flow: How to Structure Effectively

Summary

Backlog management tools are often suitable for the overall project management process. To pick the one that is best suited for your team, make sure to have a clear list of priorities and consider what other actions you will want to perform with the chosen tool.

What specific features are non-negotiable for your workflow? Do you require robust task tracking capabilities, customizable workflows, or seamless collaboration features?

Additionally, consider the broader context. What other actions do you envision performing alongside backlog management?

Teamhood is an agile backlog management tool for Agile practitioners. It offers great Kanban structuring and can cope with larger sets of data. The tool also has a fundamental set of necessary features for proper methodical use, whether Scrum or Kanban. The most important emphasis is that Teamhood is both agile and Agile – fast, flexible, easy to use.

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